While many rural hospitals in Texas are struggling and closing down, Eastland Memorial Hospital (EMH) is expanding.
September 5, a groundbreaking was held for the Rural Health Clinic to be located at 2300 W. Commerce St. in the Eastland Medical & Professional Park.
The 5300 square foot facility is projected to be completed in June of 2020, with an estimated time frame of actually opening its doors around August of 2020. This clinic will start out with Monday through Friday hours of operation, but as demand increases, the plan is to offer Saturday and eventually Sunday hours of operation. Currently, any medical patients that need attention on the weekends only have the option of going to the ER even though it may not be a critical emergency. With the clinic open on weekends, this will offer another and often better option for patients and lighten the demand on the ER.
Kicking off the groundbreaking ceremony, Ted Mathews, EMH administrator; Bill Hoffman, EMH Board President; and Eastland Mayor, Larry Vernon each spoke to thank those entities and individuals that contributed to the project. They touched on the history of the hospital and each praised the community effort for the support and contributions for the hospital and its continued expansion.
According to an article on the Eastland Memorial Hospital website, EMH was built by mostly volunteer help paid only with coffee and doughnuts, thus dubbing it “the hospital built on coffee & doughnuts”.
The community effort has continued since it’s doors opened in 1953 and has led to what is now a Premier Top 10 hospital in Texas that is constantly expanding its services. EMH has added services such as nuclear medicine and interventional radiology. A new 64 slice CT scanner will be installed in the next few days which will allow the hospital to do CT cardiac studies. This $570,000 piece of equipment was totally paid for by donations.
A reception was held at Eastland Memorial Hospital inside the Earl and Billie Bradley Wellness Center after the groundbreaking. The event was catered by the Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) of Eastland High School.